There are 2 main definitions of gem in English:

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gem 1

Pronunciation: /jem/


1A precious or semiprecious stone, especially when cut and polished or engraved.
Example sentences
  • These ornaments are made in silver, and precious and semi-precious gems are used to embellish them.
  • On display are approximately two hundred examples of semiprecious and precious gems, decorative stones, and outstanding pieces of jewelry.
  • Members were instructed in the various settings of precious stones and gems.
jewel, gemstone, stone, precious stone, semiprecious stone;
solitaire, cabochon
archaic bijou
1.1A person or thing considered to be outstandingly good or special in some respect: this architectural gem of a palace
More example sentences
  • The cathedral is now a vibrant and living component of the cultural and religious life of Waterford city and is one of our most treasured architectural gems.
  • Now you can find all of these wonderful pop gems living in a different world.
  • One of the city's architectural gems is to be restored to glory by a multi-million pound revamp - but some of Manchester's oldest trees will be felled in the process.
best, finest, pride, prize, treasure, flower, pearl, jewel in the crown;
pick, choice, cream, the crème de la crème, elite, acme
informal one in a million, bee's knees
1.2Used in names of some brilliantly colored hummingbirds, e.g., mountain gem.

verb (gems, gemming, gemmed)

[with object] (usually as adjective gemmed) rare
Decorate with or as with gems.
Example sentences
  • With the gemmed undergarments being worth a reputed £10,000, to not show them to anybody would be even more pointless than making them in the first place.
  • Their cheeks are gemmed with tears lit pink in the coming sun.
  • Because he squirmed in protest as she tried to remove his gilded, gemmed gauntlets, she had to leave them on.



Pronunciation: /-ˌlīk/
Example sentences
  • Its 14 gem-like songs remain true to the deepest traditions of fado, the breathtakingly lyrical and melancholic music of Portugal.
  • Set, gem-like, between the mountains and the sea, Cape Town is a spectacular city.
  • Rob stared, in awe, his eyes large and glassy and gem-like.


Old English gim, from Latin gemma 'bud, jewel'; influenced in Middle English by Old French gemme.

Words that rhyme with gem

ahem, Belém, Clem, condemn, contemn, crème de la crème, em, hem, Jem, LibDem, phlegm, pro tem, rem, Shem, stem, them

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: gem

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There are 2 main definitions of gem in English:

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Ground-effect machine.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: GEM

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